Single-Class Parties: Oops All Fighters

Single-Class Parties: Oops All Fighters

Introduction

We’re taking a look at building single-class parties. Building a party around a single class presents unique challenges often due individual classes’ limited capabilities. DnD is fundamentally a game about a party of diverse characters pooling their abilities to become more than the sum of their parts. The single-class party flips that on its head, introducing fun new challenges.

Fighters are a lot of fun to build and play if you can see past the “generic fighting person” that is the Champion Fighter, and a party of capable martial characters can be a lot of fun in a game often dominated by clerics and wizards. The challenge of a party with nearly no magical abilities presents the game in an entirely new light, forcing the players to look for mundane solutions to often supernatural problems, as well as facing magic-using enemies with only the strength of your weapons and armor to protect you.

The Rules

  • No multiclassing
  • 4 party members
  • Must attempt to cover all party roles

Strengths and Weaknesses the All-Fighter Party

Fighters thrive at applying violence via a weapon and enduring violence via some combination of armor and a ton of hit points. They thrive as Defenders and Strikers, but really struggle to fill other roles in the party.

The Party

Member 1: Half-Elf Eldritch Knight Fighter

The smart one in a party of characters with 8 Intelligence, our Eldritch Knight is doing a lot of heavy lifting. We need the additional skills from Half-Elf, and the +2/+1/+1 increases allow us to more easily deal with our MAD issues. Starting with 16 in each of Dex, Con, and Int allows us to build around fighting at range, and allows us to support the Intelligence-based skills to fill the Scholar role.

We’ll be the only character in the party capable of area damage, so we also cover the Blaster role. Getting Fireball at level 9 isn’t exactly a great Blaster, but that challenge is part of the fun of a single-class party.

We’ll also pick up the Ritual Caster feat, selecting Wizard as our ritual spell list. This will provide a lot of utility options, allowing us to claim the Utility Caster role.

Member 2: Variant Human Purple Dragon Knight Fighter

The charming one in a party of characters with 8 Charisma, the Purple Dragon Knight is the nominal leader of our party. The Royal Envoy feature at level 7 gives us proficiency and Expertise in Persuasion, making us the logical choice for a Fighter looking to serve as the party’s Face. We’ll use our background and our Variant Human skill to pick up Insight and Persuasion at low levels, then use Royal Envoy to pick up something else at level 7 since we’re already proficient in Persuasion.

Rallying Cry also gives us a splash of healing, allowing use to rescue allies much like we would with Mass Healing Word. We can also add the Healer feat, giving us the ability to restore a few more hit points to everyone in the party. Throw in Inspiring Leader at level 1 with our Human feat, and the temporary hit points go a long way to improve our party’s durability. Arguably this covers the Support role, especially when combined with Inspiring Surge at level 10.

Member 3: Battle Master Fighter

The perceptive one in a party of characters with 8 Wisdom, Our Battle Master will be a Dexterity-based archer. This gives us the ability scores to support Rogue-like skills including Perception and Stealth. Ideally we want proficiency in Investigation, Perception, Stealth, and Thieves’ Tools, all of which can be easily achieved with a combination of our class skills and our background, especially if we customize our background skills.

Our choice of feats and maneuvers will be crucial here. With go-to archery options like Crossbow Expert and Sharpshooter, our damage output will be excellent, allowing us to fill the Striker role. We’ll use our maneuvers to control the battlefield, allowing us to claim the Controller role and arguably a bit of Support.

Any race will suffice here, especially if it gets us Darkvision. Goblin would be a great choice for Cunning Escape so that we’re not accidentally pulled into melee. Races which provide extra skills like Kenku and Tabaxi are also good choices.

Member 4: Cavalier Fighter

The durable one in a party full of people with 14 Constitution, our Cavalier is our party’s primary Defender. We’ll grab polearm master, but we don’t need Sentinel because we get Hold the Line at level 10. We’ll have plenty of ability score increases and feats to spare since Cavalier does a lot of the heavy lifting for us, so race to 20 Strength, then consider feats like Chef and Skill Expert.

The Report Card

We just barely managed to cover every role, but it’s definitely a stretch for some of them.

RoleMember(s)
Blaster1
Controller3
Defender4
Face2
Healer2
Scholar1
Scout3
Striker3
Support2
Utility Caster1

Biggest Strength

With an all-fighter party, we’re very durable and very effective in combat. Our Con saves are high enough to protect us from a broad range of debilitating effects, and we have enough hit points that damage doesn’t scare us.

Biggest Weakness

Anything targeting our mental saves is going to be a huge problem. We may also struggle with crowds of enemies since our ability to deal area damage is extremely limited. We can’t provide magical buffs which would provide things like flight or invisibility, so our best bet will often be to get those things from potions whenever possible.

Conclusion

The lack of magical capabilities definitely presents an issue, but covering the skill-based roles was surprisingly easy. This is a party that will thrive in a lot of combat encounters, but the first well-prepared wizard that they fight will definitely give them some trouble.

If you enjoyed this article, I encourage you to check out the other articles in the series:

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